-“JOHN GALLIANO A/W 2009
After briefly mentioning this collection in the last post on Lady Gaga’s ‘Applause’ video, I felt that this collection truly deserves further exploration. I have recently become more and more infatuated with Galliano as a designer - his creations for Dior Haute Couture were never anything short of spectacular, and a number of documentaries have been recently brought to my attention detailing the inspirations and the working processes of the eccentric genius. This collection is arguably one of his greatest - the show transitioned from structured jackets and full skirts through to sheer fabrics and explosions of organza, showcasing the full extent of Galliano’s multi-faceted aesthetic.
The inspiration for the collection was Russian folklore. The models walked a runway sleeted with miniature bubbles illuminated by laser lighting, creating an ethereal landscape in which the clothes could truly come to life. The garments were highly-researched and based on folk costumes - from exaggerated bell sleeves, peasant blouses and full skirts with exaggerated proportions, the silhouettes combined with the extravagant make-up came together to create a scene of total escapism.
In typical Galliano fashion, the collection dripped with excess. Heavy embellishment featured on jewelled headdresses, whereas oversized pendants and chain belts adorned every outfit. The contrast of the heavy metal with the silk and lace of the blouses was striking - there seemed to be a seamless blend between a tougher aesthetic and the more romantic aesthetic that Galliano is famed for. The casting also featured some of fashion’s biggest Eastern-European superstars - from Vlada Roslyakova and Magdalena Frackowiak to Tanya Dziahileva and Sasha Pivovarova, almost every painted face on the catwalk was instantly recognisable.
It was, however, towards the end of the show that Galliano provided us with a true spectacle as the lights began to dim and the outfits became decidedly more delicate. A series of bias-cut chiffon gowns truly stole the show - teamed with headpieces adorned with gold coins, heavy silver veils and, of course, the dramatic shimmering make-up, Galliano transported his viewer into a land of fantasy. It was the perfect demonstration of romanticism and also of fashion as a method of escapism;Galliano is not just a designer, he is a true showman.”-
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